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Articles by Amory Lovins and L. Hunter Lovins

Amory Lovins and L. Hunter Lovins are cofounders of the Rocky Mountain Institute and coauthors, with Paul Hawken, of Natural Capitalism.

Featured Article

America’s fragile domestic infrastructure threatens her energy security at least as much as dependence on oil from the Middle East. Replacing oil from that region with even more vulnerable domestic systems would therefore decrease energy security.

Stranger than science fiction.

Extraordinarily concentrated energy flows invite and reward devastating attack. In our 1982 Pentagon study Brittle Power: Energy Strategy for National Security, we found that a handful of people could shut down three-quarters of the oil and gas supplies to the Eastern states (without leaving Louisiana), cut the power to any major city, or kill millions by crashing an airplane into a nuclear power plant. All of that remains true today. Expanding such centralized and vulnerable energy systems would threaten our national security.

Fundamentally, energy security is less about foreign vs. domestic sources, or a shortage of giant energy facilities, than about the basic architecture of the energy infrastructure. A system is secure not because it’s American or big, but because it’s designed to make large-scale failures impossible and local failures... Read more

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  • An excerpt from Natural Capitalism by Paul Hawken, Amory Lovins, and L. Hunter Lovins

    Imagine for a moment a world where cities have become peaceful and serene because cars and buses are whisper quiet, vehicles exhaust only water vapor, and parks and greenways have replaced unneeded urban freeways. OPEC has ceased to function because the price of oil has fallen to five dollars a barrel, but there are few buyers for it because cheaper and better ways now exist to get the services people once turned to oil to provide. Living standards for all people have dramatically improved, particularly for the poor and those in developing countries. Involuntary unemployment no longer exists, and income taxes have largely been eliminated. Houses, even low-income housing units, can pay part of their mortgage costs by the energy they produce; there are few if any active landfills; worldwide forest cover is increasing; dams are being dismantled; atmospheric C02 levels are decreasing for the first time in two hundred years; and effluent water leaving factories is cleaner than the water coming into them. Industrialized countries have reduced resource use by 80 percent while improving the quality of life.